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Dave Weckl decided to fulfill his dream of starting a live band in 1998. Having released three solo projects that featured top jazz performers such as Chick Corea, Anthony Jackson, Michael Brecker and Steve Gadd, Dave was driven to write and produce music driven by band chemistry and delivered personally to audiences worldwide.

The original DWB lineup included two musicians Dave had known, respected, and played with for years; Jay Oliver (keyboards), who had been Dave's good friend since high school, and Tom Kennedy (bass), who had jammed with Dave since the age of 15. Jay had been very involved in writing and production of Dave's original three solo records, while Tom also appeared on many of the songs. Rounding out the lineup were two highly-respected world-class musicians in Brandon Fields (saxophones) and Buzz Feiten (guitars).

The band's first release, Rhythm of the Soul, was about collaboration and chemistry that started in the studio and grew stronger as live performances. Though Oliver and Weckl wrote this album, it differed from the solo releases because it was written with a touring band in mind.

ROS also introduced a consistency in theme and feel that came with a total band effort. Both sonically and thematically, one could sense something more organic and loose - with R&B/Blues, funk and New Orleans-inspired textures.

"The Zone" kicked it all off with thick pocket grooves, soulful organ and guitar solos, and a fat bottom end. "101 Shuffle, "Mud Sauce," (with Tom on an upright bass), and "Designer Stubble" introduced a myriad of textures that many fans had never heard in Dave's music - with driving guitar leads and authentic R&B flavors. And the mysterious "Someone's Watching" featured beautiful sax leads with undercurrent of warm ambience.

The "band sensibility" manifested itself in a different way when Dave, Jay, and Tom recorded "Transition Jam." Symbolic of Dave's goal to put together a band with his longtime friends, this particular song captured three friends, 22 years after they had first jammed together, jamming again in a studio as accomplished professional musicians - in a band together.

And there was more to it than that. As Dave describes in the record's liner notes, "we wanted everyone to hear the awesome Tom Kennedy, so we decided to set up a couple of mics and roll tape...Yeah Tommy!"

The band pulled off some ambitious jams in "Access Denied" (including Frank Gambale on guitar and Steve Tavaglione on tenor sax), and "Big B Little B" (also featuring Frank and Bob Malach on tenor sax). Dave and Jay paid tribute to the passing of legendary R&B/Gospel pianist Richard Tee and the birth of his daughter, Claire, with "Song for Claire."

Synergy (1999) was named for the spontaneous and fully collaborative band approach to writing the music. In the album's liner notes, Dave says "I decided to have a band writing day, rehearsal kind of jam session, which ended up yielding the foundation for almost half of the material for the CD."

"High Life" kicked this record off with a bright groove, displaced syncopations, and extended sax and keys solos - wrapping up with a powerful drum solo.

Buzz wrote two strong tunes on the album - "Panda's Dream," with strong, defined riffs that were a trademark aspect of the band's sound at that time, and the delicate, acoustic flavored "A Simple Prayer." Both added greatly to this record.

Of course, a highlight of the record is "Cultural Concurrence," an all-percussion piece featuring looped African drum sounds and trademark drum set soloing. This piece is followed by a newer version of the old favorite, "Tower of Inspiration," called "Tower '99." Fans of the original version on the "Master Plan" record appreciated the funky/groovy feel to the newer one.

Prior to the band's next record, in 2000, both Jay and Buzz left to pursue the many other projects on their respective plates. This is when Steve Weingart joined. Appropriately, the new lineup produced the band's next record, entitled "Transition."

This record offered several tunes that have become fan favorites at live shows and on the band's live record (LIVE...and Very Plugged In), including "Wake Up," "Braziluba," "Crossing Paths," and "Just for the Record." The record also featured the addition of Remo percussion to Dave's kit, plus an auxiliary 18" bass drum. His creative use of these new drums inspired much of the writing on this record as well as its follow up - "Perpetual Motion."

"Perpetual Motion" found the new lineup maturing and producing many interesting and angular grooves, such as on "Double Up" and "Child's Play." "Mesmer-Eyes" became a live favorite with its keyboard and sax duel, as did "Tiempo de Festival."

Also important to the sound and direction of the band: starting with "Transition," Dave took on the role of sole producer and mixing engineer.

In 2002, the band produced its first-ever and long awaited live album. A two-disc package, Live...and Very Plugged In captured the band at its peak of energy and playfulness.

Every song on "Live..." has its own unique turns from the studio version and there are plenty of signature moments of comedy - some planned and some not planned. "Hesitation" finds the audience rolling in laughter as Dave and Gary Meek play a short intro to Pee Wee Ellis' "The Chicken." And...Tom's sense of humor shines when he answers someone's cell phone ringing in the audience with his own interpretation on the bass during his solo on Thelonious Monk's "Rhythm-A-Ning."

But this is an album of serious music - highlighted by the interplay of four great musicians who, together and independently, bring new energy to many of the band's best tunes. And Dave takes his drum solo to all-new heights. A track every drummer should hear, "Cultural Concurrence" finds Dave exploring many corners of his repertoire, from the opening brush work and underlying double-bass drum pulse to a fantastic percussion movement, signature drum set soloing, and tasteful cymbal work to close out the piece.

In 2005, the band released Multiplicity. The record featured a diverse lineup of nine songs highlighting the writing talents of Steve, Gary and Dave, who spent many hours together in Dave's studio composing most of the material. But the performance talents of all the band members shined through on this album.

The funky "Watch Your Step" offered a solid groove building into a drum solo in the middle. Dave sat behind the board for this entire record - yielding a very precise sound not unlike his approach to music.

2006 saw another transition for the band when Steve Weingart left to pursue other projects. Jay Oliver returned for some exciting North American tour dates that included old DWB favorites and some standards. In 2013, the band reunited for two beneift shows: one at Cafe Cordiale in Los Angeles and one in Springfield, IL, as part of the Convergence project.

Though the band is not currently active, Dave continues to collaborate with Gary, Tom, and Jay on a number of projects.
 




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